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Special Report Transcript Episode 17, Section 1, Time 00:26

Two convicted murderers walked free this weekend. They were the first perpetrators of gross human rights violations to be granted amnesty by the Truth Commission. Amnesty is our focus later on in this programme. Tonight we take you to KwaZulu-Natal where the Truth Commission and the Supreme Court concentrated on the KwaMakhutha massacre of 1987. But first, the Truth Commission hearings in the Eastern Cape on resistance and repression in the mid-eighties. By early 1985 tension in Uitenhage’s townships had reached boiling point. On February 19, Minister of Law and Order, Louis Le Grange visited Uitenhage with police Commissioner Johan Coetzee. The town’s senior police officers, known as the order group, explained that soft weaponry for riot control was no longer effective and stronger measures should be used. As from March 15 police patrols were no longer issued with teargas, rubber bullets and birdshot; they were given real ammunition. They knew it wouldn’t be long before their new methods were tested. But perhaps they didn’t predict the outcry that ensued. Jann Turner reports on the funeral march that turned into mayhem.

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